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Let's talk about ... acceptance

If you know me personally, you know that Bobby Bones is probably the only public figure who would make me starstruck. I listen to his radio show every single day and absorb as much of his other content as I can. He has this mantra that I will paraphrase as “If they aren’t hurting kids or animals, let them be.” Implementing that frame of mind has saved me from so much frustration, irritation, and annoyance at things that are simply out of my control.


The point here is to accept people for who they are, and for who they aren’t. Let them live where they want, have the job they want, and for the love of God, let them love who they want. So long as the person they chose isn’t hurting them physically, emotionally, or mentally, just let them be their form of happiness. Your definition of “happy” in a romantic relationship probably looks different than most people in your life. Leave the judgment to the juries.


Your life will also get a lot more peaceful when you accept how people treat you. If someone treats you poorly, accept that. I don’t mean you accept that and let the poor treatment continue. You accept it and then don’t give them that same access anymore. Not everyone is going to like you. You don’t like everyone either. And unfortunately, not every person is going to treat you well. Thank them for the clarity and then use the energy you were clearly wasting on them to be kind to someone else.


It’s important to accept when people treat you with kindness, generosity, and compassion too. For some reason, I sometimes struggle with this. You can accept compliments without being self-absorbed. You can accept gifts without being greedy. You can accept love without being needy.  


While I work on these bigger forms of acceptance, I’ve been practicing accepting the little things. For example, my dog sheds a ton. Every article of clothing I own has at least one of her hairs on it. There isn’t a hand vacuum strong enough to get all her hair off my couch. And dust bunnies gather in the corners of my house faster than I can clean them up. Does this mean I have a “house” lint roller and a “car” lint roller? Yes. Does this mean Swiffer should sponsor me with the number of gadgets I use daily? Also, yes. Does this mean I am going to love her less or not let her snuggle with me on the couch? No chance.


Learning to accept big and small things will give you large and small amounts of peace. And, even better it leaves you energy to put towards more positive things. Right now, I bet you can think of something or someone who has been bothering you for a reason that is entirely out of your control. I encourage you to accept that thing or person for what they are and adjust their place in your life accordingly. I promise you will enjoy the outcome.


An affirmation to try:  “God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference.” (serenity prayer)


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